You've got a grill, you've got the grillables. You've got deck chairs and a kiddie pool and hopefully a cooler full of pilsner. But a summer party is even more festive with a big pitcher of sangria. And we're not just talking the standard stuff; here are four fun variations on the classic mix of wine, fruit, and spirits. These drinks are perfect for summer entertaining because you can make a giant batch—and most of them get tastier with a few hours in the fridge.
White Wine Sangria
When we say sangria, we usually picture a bunch of fruit bobbling around in a wine-filled pitcher. But this sleek Starfruit Sangria is part sangria, part gin cocktail, part lemonade, and completely refreshing. Slices of starfruit on the sides of each glass make for a nice presentation; you could also float them in the pitcher if you're pressed for time.
When the weather gets really hot, a cooling cup of watermelon juice is just the ticket. Even better? Fresh Watermelon Sangria. Crushed watermelon, crisp white wine, lime juice, and a splash of rum come together in a drink that's about as refreshing as running through a sprinkler. Feel free to add a sprig of mint.
Red Wine Sangria
If you're usually a cocktail person, we recommend the Manhattan Sangria, which features bing cherries soaked in cognac, red wine, and sweet vermouth (we like Dolin, though Carpano Antica would probably be amazing, too.)
Diana Barrios Treviño's recipe for fruity and fresh Apple Sangria (pictured at top) has a secret ingredient: half a cup of applesauce. It may sound weird, but the result is wonderful, with tons of bright apple flavor and just a little bit of texture.
Do you have a favorite sangria recipe for summer entertaining?
This post may contain links to Amazon or other partners; your purchases via these links can benefit Serious Eats. Read more about our affiliate linking policy.